Home is where a life is made, memories are spun, and hopefully, the happiest moments occur. It’s where you’ll wake up with your baby hundreds of times over dozens of sleepy nights, it’s where you’ll run to get drinks of water for littles who just can’t seem to fall asleep. It’s where you’ll bicker with your spouse and share apologies over your favorite cocktail. It’s where you’ll redecorate and rearrange and reconsider. It’s where you should feel most comfortable.
The concept of “home” is one that I’ve written about a lot and one of the notions that is most important to me. I love creating spaces that feel like home, be it an RV, an imperfect condo, a bedroom in my parents house, or now, my most recent venture, a tiny coffee shop in an unsuspecting mountain town.
Home, although it’s so much more than the pieces that fill it, like your wardrobe, is something that should be made up of pieces that were made with love, dignity, fairness, and creativity. There’s a dark side to every industry and home goods are just as guilty as any other when it comes to mass production, unfair wages, and cheaply made products that are harmful to the makers and the environment. So, when it’s possible, I try to fill my spaces that I call home with goods that were made as beautifully and fairly as the space I’m trying to curate.
Made Trade is a new favorite resource for doing just that, taking the guess work out of creating an “ethical home”.
If you read my blog post from last week, you’ll know that deciphering the ethics of most brands can get pretty “murky”. That’s why when a brand like Made Trade pops on the scene I LOVE sharing about what they do. They share exactly where their pieces are made, who makes them, what materials are used, and whether the artisan was paid a fair wage to do so.
Made Trade’s core values are Sustainability, Heritage, Fair Trade, Vegan and when possible, USA Made. This means that they’re committed to sourcing products that not only have minimal environmental impact but are made fairly, without the use of animal products, and either support a local USA cooperative or craft or preserve a cultural heritage through artisan craft. They lay it out clearly, concisely, without greenwashing or using buzz words to catch attention.
We call it being “ethically elevated.” It means we put artistry above efficiency. Fair wages above profits. Sustainability above mass production. Quality craftsmanship above mindless consumption. And transparency above everything, as we painstakingly hand-select only the most artfully-designed, ethically-made goods that put people and our planet first.
— Made Trade
That, to me, is what an ethical home should look like as well.
For this collaboration, I drifted away from my typical “drinkware of choice” (a coffee mug) and opted for something AJ and I can enjoy together. These copper cups are handmade by Sertodo Copper, an initiative making gorgeous cooper homegoods in Texas and Mexico for more than 20 years. The craft though, has been passed down for more than 1000 years and is a source of both art, creativity, and income for the artisans who create it.
The cups are made using recycled copper, meant to last for generations much like the craft itself.
My go-to cocktail is a Moscow Mule, which is heightened by the copper, making this cup an easy sell for me, but it also works just as well for those middle of the night water runs to squelch bad dreams or parched throats.
The beauty of Made Trade, much like a home, is that it’s a beautifully curated “hodgepodge” of goods. All of them chosen for it’s fairness, beauty, and usefulness. They have everything from clothing (with pieces from some of my all-time favorite brands), to furniture and lighting, to smaller pieces of decor for your home. There’s something for all homes, bodies, and budgets on Made Trade and that’s certainly something worth toasting to.
*This post was sponsored by Made Trade, but as always, all photos, creative direction, and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that are making the world a better place.*